We all come from somewhere. Some got here right through Hackley Hospital, others grew up over in Sparta and relocated to where they should have been in the first place and others come from a little further away. It takes a little time to acclimate to Muskegon, for both the new arrivals as well as the long timers who are here, but once the "get to know ya" phase is past, Muskegon is one of the most awesome places to emerge, re-invent, bring forth what's been learned elsewhere and put it to work for the betterment of all of us in more ways than most can imagine.
Enter Craig Person. Craig came to town 6 years ago. A Silicon Valley background and international business flare, Craig was watching how things were going in California, especially with the rising costs and the unlimited opportunity to "make a long weekend of it". All fun, but it adds up and when the time was right, it was on Craig to cash on on the house he had and make a change. Keep in mind, the cost of real estate out west is a teeny tiny bit more than most of us are used to so, like he did here, Craig bought cheap there, sold high AND gave the guy who helped him the the renovations and rebuild half, still leaving enough to make the move to Muskegon and begin anew.
Buying his first house on Pine Street, the "Blue House" you saw pictured on the front, site unseen Craig came to town and got to work. Only the people at Home Depot "knew him by name" according to Craig, but there was a lot to do. The Blue House had seen much better days. Those who owned it and were living there had spent years letting it slide. Even the back yard was all broken glass, old appliance and car parts buried in the sands of time, garbage in and out of the place, renters who had no respect for their neighbors, community or property. The years really took their toll on what was once an electronics store as lore goes. Where some would see a wrecking ball, Craig saw opportunity and sweat equity. Let me tell you now. The "Blue House Manor" is stunning. The multi family housing unit is filled with all of the modern technology you can imagine. The yard is now the "Blue House Manor Garden" and day after day, the neighborhood is picked up by hand of any of the rubbish or blight found within eye sight.
Craig also spent a lot of the first 6 years here observing. Learning. Seeing how things are done and where he could offer ways to improve. He's known the highest of highs being an international businessman, and he too has hit the bottom with a stint of homelessness. A deep understanding of the ups and downs of life comes with Craig and as he's begun his quest to be seen a little more in Muskegon, he's bringing that positive and almost unharnessed energy with him. How can he help people improve their neighborhood? How can he help them learn how to better manage their finances? How can he day by day make one thing better, be it a house that was left for demolition or building a relationship with another businessman or town notable? He's on a mission and he's not afraid to be loud about it.
I had a chance to catch up with Craig in the Blue House Manor Garden. Meet Craig and catch the vibe of some real positive action going on in the McLaughlin Neighborhood.
An eyesore, is now a Manor. What was once left for dead has been caringly and lovingly brought back to beyond the most incredible inception of a building since those long gone days of the electronics store. Renewal is happening and we're growing in ways that might not be noticed by all of us outside of the large structures Downtown Muskegon and in surrounding communities. It goes back to the simple fact that Muskegon is truly one of the greatest treasures in Michigan. We've taken our lumps over the years for sure, much like the Blue House. But as the Blue House has become a Manor, so goes the brilliant and bright future for all of us. Welcome to our new neighbor Craig and welcome to your vision for the best in all of us too! We're glad you made it to the real "West Coast".
CLICK HERE to follow Craig's YouTube Page. Lots of great, uplifting content.
CLICK HERE to learn more about Blue House Investor